'Bomb' by Steve Sheinkin
Published on Tuesday, April 30, 2013 - 4:39pm
Bomb by Steve Sheinkin is an exciting ride through World War II as seen by some of the top physicists of their day. With the revelation that an atom could be split in two, creating fission, came an arms race towards the first atomic bomb. The U.S. knew that an atomic bomb in the hands of Hitler would have devastating effects and the best way to prevent that was to make a successful atomic bomb first.
But the story is more complex than that. It involves Soviet spies and Norwegian resistance fighters, the FBI and the military. While the top physicists from the U.S. and Europe are busy working, other storylines are happening at the same time. Resistance fighters work to disrupt Germany’s progress. The Soviet Union decides that the quickest way for them to successfully obtain an atomic bomb is to steal the information. The FBI and CIA are determined to root out all of the Soviet spies in the U.S.
Sheinkin does a great job of weaving the different storylines together to create one big cohesive picture. He enhances the narrative by including well placed quotes throughout the story, from Dr. Oppenheimer to KGB agents. The pictures placed throughout the book give faces to the men and women involved.
This book is great for those wanting to learn more about the making of the atomic bomb and how it influenced World War II. Sheinkin is also very good at describing the science in a simple manner so the reader may understand the basic science behind atom bombs.
It is no surprise that Bomb was a nominee and winner of multiple awards, including the YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction and ALSC’s Robert F. Sibert Award.
I would recommend this book to all ages.